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The foreign minister said they are thankful to Mamata as she spiritedly upheld the long-cherished values of Bengal - the principle of religious harmony and brotherhood that Bangabandhu spearheaded throughout his life.

Momen said Bangladesh and India enjoy excellent bilateral relations and mutual engagements have expanded to all possible areas of cooperation in recent years.

He said the shared history, culture, language, values and ancestral linkages between the people on both sides of the border have made the relations unique and stronger.

In particular, Momen said, West Bengal and its people have a special place in the hearts of Bangladeshis.

In this special year, when Bangladesh celebrates the Golden Jubilee of its Independence and Mujib Borsho, as well as 50 years of Bangladesh-India diplomatic relations, he recalled with gratitude the support and sacrifices of the people and political leadership of India, including the people of West Bengal.

As the world confronts the unprecedented challenges posed by the unknown enemy Covid-19, Momen said Bangladesh remains committed to continuing to work together for the benefit of the people of the two countries. “I’m confident that together we’ll counter this menace and help return lives and livelihoods to normalcy soon.”

Mamata Banerjee, who led Trinamool Congress to a landslide victory in West Bengal assembly elections, was sworn on Wednesday as the state’s chief minister for the third consecutive term.

The 66-year-old leader, in her trademark white saree and shawl, took oath in Bangla at a simple ceremony with Covid-19 protocols in place at the Raj Bhavan in central Kolkata.

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